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About READ 180

Instructional Model

Reporting and Assessment

Professional Development

Purchasing and Support

Upgrading to READ 180 Next Generation


About READ 180

1. What is READ 180?

READ 180 is a comprehensive system of curriculum, instruction, assessment, and professional development proven to raise reading achievement for struggling readers in grades 4—12+.

Originally developed by Dr. Ted Hasselbring and his team at Vanderbilt University, READ 180 is now the most thoroughly researched reading intervention program in the world. Hundreds of studies, five peer-reviewed journals, and the federal government’s What Works Clearinghouse, have all documented READ 180’s effectiveness.

Designed for any student reading two or more years below grade level, READ 180 leverages adaptive technology to individualize instruction for students and provide powerful data for differentiation to teachers.

READ 180 is filled with engaging multimedia science and social studies content as well as literature. Respectful of students of all ages, READ 180 is available in three Stages each with unique, age-appropriate content: Stage A (Grades 4—6), Stage B (Grades 6—8), and Stage C (Grades 9 and Up).

2. What is READ 180 Next Generation?

READ 180 Next Generation is the result of five years of intensive research and development. Informed by our experience serving over one million students a day in over 40,000 classrooms, READ 180 Next Generation reflects the best practices observed in the most successful implementations across the country. A suite of new technology, data analyses, content, and resources is designed to maximize student engagement, teacher effectiveness, and leader empowerment. It represents the best of what is known about how to raise achievement for struggling adolescent readers. The Goal: College & Career Readiness for ALL Students.

3. Is READ 180 research-based?

READ 180 is the most thoroughly researched and documented reading intervention program in the world. It is built on more than a decade of scientifically-based research and the collaboration of reading experts. Developed in clinical and classroom settings, the program is uniquely positioned to address the needs of struggling readers.

READ 180 has been proven to:
  • Improve performance on state test results
  • Reduce the dropout rate
  • Improve reading achievement for African-American, Native-American, and Latino students
  • Improve reading achievement for English language learners
  • Improve reading achievement for students who receive special education services
  • Increase teacher retention
4. What are the typical gains and benefits of READ 180?

With a collection of tools that enable accelerated growth, effectiveness reports show that READ 180 students consistently out-perform control group students, with achievement double or triple their control group counterparts. Additionally, data from schools across the country show that when READ 180 is implemented with fidelity, students frequently improve their reading levels by 2–5 years of growth as measured by Lexiles®.

5. What skills are developed using READ 180?

READ 180 targets skill development in the following areas:

  • Phonemic Awareness: Phonemic awareness is developed both in the context of decoding (word identification) and encoding (spelling)
  • Phonics: Instruction is provided through decoding tips with modeled practice in segmentation, blending, structural analysis, and correct pronunciation
  • Fluency: READ 180 develops fluency through repeated reading in the Software, modeled reading in the Audiobooks and eReads, structured engagement techniques conducted by the teacher, and independent reading
  • Text Comprehension: Students read text in their proximal zone of development using the Lexile Framework for Reading®. Texts are carefully measured for text qualities such as levels of meaning, structure, knowledge demands, and language clarity. The Software and the rBook instruction use motivating videos to help students build mental models that promote text comprehension
  • Academic Vocabulary: Vocabulary development is supported through explicit instruction in the rBooks as well as the systematic introduction of content-relevant vocabulary in the Software
  • Spelling: Software presents spelling instruction and practice that is assessment-based and individualized for each student. Spelling errors are addressed with immediate, corrective feedback
  • Writing: The rBook presents carefully scaffolded instruction on the key types of writing: Argument Essay, Informational/Explanatory, and Narrative. Whole- and Small-Group differentiated writing instruction moves students from teacher-led paragraph and multi-paragraph rBook writing to independent practice in the Writing Zone within the Instructional Software
  • Global Perspectives: 50% of READ 180 readings focus on diverse people and cultures both within and outside of the United States
  • College and Career Readiness Skills: Each rBook Workshop focuses on Higher Order Thinking skills that help them analyze, synthesize, and evaluate. Students are guided through an “internship on a page” as they discuss and apply college and career strategies and competencies
6. How does READ 180 serve as a bridge to the Common Core State Standards?

The goal of READ 180 is to accelerate the acquisition of literacy skills so that students can access grade-level standards. Even though READ 180 is designed for, and respectful of, below-grade-level students, it ultimately shares the same goals that the Common Core State Standards put forth: that students are able to read, question, comprehend, and respond to increasingly complex texts.

READ 180 exposes students to a wide range of quality, increasingly complex texts, while providing them the scaffolding they need to access, comprehend, and respond to grade-level content. The instruction provides daily opportunities for writing and teaches students how to support their arguments with textual evidence.

7. What is text complexity? Why is it important? How is it measured?
What is text complexity?

Text complexity is a measure of how easy or difficult a particular text is to read.

Why is it important?

All students must be able to read and comprehend independently the kinds of challenging texts commonly found in college and careers.

How is it measured?

The Common Core State Standards define a 3-part model for determining how easy or difficult a particular text is to read.

  • Quantitative – The Lexile measures readability, based on factors such as word frequency and sentence length.
  • Qualitative – The content of the text is evaluated for dimensions such as levels of meaning, text structure, language conventionality and clarity, and knowledge demands.
  • Reader and Task – Discretionary elements such as a reader’s level of motivation, knowledge of topic, and experiences with the topic all impact student choice. READ 180 offers a wide range of quality texts, at all different reading levels, that teachers can recommend and students can choose.
8. How does READ 180 accelerate students toward independent reading of complex text?

The entire design of READ 180 is based on a gradual release model that moves students toward independence with complex text over time. The READ 180 Instructional Model has three rotations. Two of these (software and independent reading) are completed independently by students, who tackle progressively more rigorous demands as their skills improve.

Throughout a school year, READ 180 exposes students to a wide range of increasingly more complex texts that scaffolds and accelerates them to independence with grade-level content. As students gain mastery, they are able to gain more information from what they read. READ 180 Next Generation provides a text complexity measurement for each text students encounter in the rBook, Paperbacks, Audiobooks, and eReads.

Whole- and Small-Group instruction are governed by consistent routines that move from highly-scaffolded to independent reading over time:

  • Oral Cloze
  • Choral Reading
  • Partner cloze
  • Independent Reading

The rBook, the foundation for teacher-mediated instruction in whole and small group, is organized around nine workshops. Text builds in complexity from Workshop 1 to Workshop 9, but also within each workshop, as students read several increasingly complex/difficult articles on a central topic.

9. How do English Language Learners benefit from READ 180?

Exciting, relevant nonfiction engages English language learners and provides them with the academic vocabulary and essential knowledge required for success in the content areas. Special features are included in READ 180 to support these learners, including second language support in the following languages: Cantonese, Hmong, Vietnamese, Haitian Creole, and Spanish.

The supplemental LBook extends rBook instruction and supports English language learners at multiple language proficiency levels by providing explicit, sequential, linguistically logical, and systematic instruction and practice.

10. How do Special Education students benefit from READ 180?

Special Education professionals have always relied on a high degree of individualization and differentiation. READ 180 is built upon these principles and includes many features for students with special needs, including Universal Design features and 508 compliance, to enable students with certain physical disabilities to access the instructional content.

11. How does READ 180 meet standards for language arts?

READ 180 addresses key skills as outlined in individual State Standards,and in the Common Core State Standards for Language Arts.

12. How does READ 180 help students prepare for state exams?

READ 180 includes five important types of high-stakes test preparation: teaching content-area concepts and skills, using varied assessment approaches and formats, teaching time management skills, increasing student motivation, and reducing test-taking anxiety. Throughout READ 180, students receive automatic feedback, enabling them to understand and correct their mistakes.

READ 180 also includes various practice strategies for high-stakes assessment through a Workshop Wrap-Up tests and rSkills Tests for every Workshop. The Test-Taking Strategies book includes lessons on test-taking and practice tests, to help students build familiarly with high-stakes assessments. Additionally, reporting and assessment tools provide teachers and school officials access to informative and detailed reports on student progress on an ongoing basis. They can easily identify areas of deficiency well before annual state exams, providing ample opportunity for further instruction in problem areas.

13. How does READ 180 support parents and caregivers in student learning?

The READ 180 Family Portal is a place for parents and caregivers to find information about the READ 180 classroom, learn how student progress is measured, and get tips on helping their student reader. The Portal, also available in Spanish, supports the diversity of families we serve and offers engagement tools such as videos and success stories to strengthen the home-school connection.

Go to the READ 180 Family Portal >

Instructional Model

1. What is the READ 180 Instructional Model?

The READ 180 Proven Instructional Model provides a simple and clear organization for the classroom. Teachers begin and end each session with Whole-Group instruction that engages the entire class. In between, students break into groups and rotate through three stations for Small-Group and independent learning. Following the 90-Minute Instructional Model is proven to result in significant gains for students after one or two years.

2. How do you select students for READ 180?

Over 100,000,000 students across the country from different grades, ethnicities, education levels, and learning abilities are making strides in their reading using READ 180. Selecting students for the program is based on the school’s needs and populations. However, Scholastic recommends that a school target their lower twenty-fifth percentile. For example, for districts using stanines, these would be your students with stanines of 1, 2, and 3.

3. How is writing taught in READ 180?

Writing instruction is explicitly covered in Whole-Group and Small-Group differentiated instruction as well as in the Instructional Software. The rBook scaffolds instruction for struggling writers through research-based techniques, including the use of graphic organizers, sentence starters, and writing frames. The rBook moves students from teacher-led paragraph and multi-paragraph writing to independent practice in the Writing Zone within the Instructional Software.

4. How is vocabulary taught in READ 180?

Students are exposed to a comprehensive range of high-utility academic vocabulary, as well as words specific to the content areas. Students complete a variety of vocabulary-based activities in their rBooks. High-frequency academic vocabulary words are introduced and used recursively throughout each rBook Workshop. Students receive instruction in word study skills, such as learning about antonyms and synonyms. Word Challenge activities promote critical thinking and application of word knowledge. Additionally, the Software contains a special section, called the Word Zone, where students receive systematic instruction in decoding and word recognition as they build automaticity. More than 8,000 words are defined and analyzed for study.

5. How is comprehension taught in READ 180?

Comprehension skills begin with an Anchor Video, where students watch a motivating video to gain background information and develop a mental model. Then, during the Small- and Whole-Group Instruction, each rBook Workshop focuses on a comprehension skill and key Critical Reading Skills. Each Workshop contains three readings on one topic, with each one building on common vocabulary and comprehension skills. At the end of each lesson, students are assessed on their understanding of comprehension skills.

In the Software, the READ 180 adaptive algorithm matches students with reading passages with comprehension levels that are within their zone of proximal development, and progresses them to slightly more difficult passages as their comprehension skills improve. As in the rBooks, students watch an engaging Anchor Video to develop a mental model of what they are about to read. Students can avail themselves of the clickable definitions to confirm and correct their understanding of challenging vocabulary. At the end of each reading passage, students answer multiple-choice questions as a vocabulary and comprehension check, receiving immediate feedback about their answers. Research shows this carefully scaffolded approach maximizes rapid improvement in comprehension skills.

6. How is fluency taught in READ 180?

During the Reading Zone section of the READ 180 Software, students will repeatedly read one of four leveled passages with varying degrees of computer support. Students can read along with computer audio at self-selected speeds, either one word at a time or phrase by phrase. Students are asked to make recordings of these readings to practice their own reading fluency, before being required to make a final recording for their teacher. During the Word and Spelling Zones, students begin to become fluent with words and spelling by using the FASTT Algorithm (Fluency and Automaticity through Systematic Teaching with Technology).

Reporting and Assessment

1. What is SAM and what does it do for reporting and assessment?

The Scholastic Achievement Manager (SAM) is the comprehensive online management system for READ 180. SAM collects and organizes student performance data and AYP accountability requirements, and supports district-wide aggregation for teachers, district administrators, and technology coordinators. SAM includes over 70 reports to help monitor student performance and grading.

2. What types of assessment are included in READ 180?

Each Stage of READ 180 includes a comprehensive suite of assessment tools and reports, including Universal Screening, Placement and Progress Monitoring, Ongoing Diagnostic and Formative, Writing, Curriculum-Based Interim and Summative, Performance-Based and Independent Reading assessments.

3. How can teachers and leaders easily access data?

Teacher and Leadership Dashboards are online portals that draw all of their data from SAM, aggregating the most critical student performance and implementation data on a Web page in a user-friendly format. Because the Dashboards are browser-based, they are available anytime, anywhere.

4. How do I grade student performance?

Balance grades from each of the rotations: Whole-Group, Small-Group, Modeled and Independent Reading, and the Instructional Software. The program offers ample opportunity to assess and grade students. READ 180 also includes a number of recommendations and reporting options that will help teachers grade students appropriately.

5. What are the SRI tests and the Lexile Framework®?

Scholastic Reading Inventory (SRI) is a reading assessment test for Grades 1–12. SRI determines the students’ reading level and places them in the appropriate level of the program. SRI also monitors student, group and class progress over time.

SRI uses the Lexile Framework for Reading®, a measure that matches students to text. The Lexile Framework places both reader and text on the same absolute scale, thereby providing a more accurate match between the two. This unique feature allows educators to more accurately match students to appropriately leveled text.

6. How often should students take the SRI test?

Scholastic recommends that students take the SRI test four times a year: the beginning, twice in the middle, and once at the end of the year.

Professional Development

1. How do I begin teaching READ 180? Is training available?

Scholastic provides comprehensive professional development in person and online.

Scholastic provides two-and-a-half days of in-person professional development with the purchase of a complete Stage of READ 180. Scholastic will meet with school or district teams to develop a personalized plan that best suits their needs.

2. What types of embedded professional development resources does READ 180 provide?

With READ 180 Next Generation, teachers receive daily professional development resources. Short, targeted videos, resources, and presentations providing strategies tied to that day’s instruction are available on the Teacher Dashboard and ITS, enabling teachers to engage in professional learning minutes before beginning to teach and at point-of-use.

A collection of professional development strategies is embedded within all of the teacher’s materials.

3. What additional resources exist for READ 180 teachers?

The Training Zone (TZ) is an online destination that provides anytime, anywhere access to a variety of resources that support the implementation of READ 180, System 44, and other Scholastic technology programs. Unlimited access to all TZ resources is available free to customers with an active Premium Support Plan, Scholastic Hosting Services, or Expert 21. Resources include classroom videos, interactive tutorials, and downloadable classroom resources for teachers and leaders, as well as live online webinar trainings and exclusive online author events.

Nextpert is a new approach to online professional learning that sets teachers up for success—on evaluations, in delivering next generation instruction, and in preparing their students for successful futures. The purchase of READ 180 Next Generation includes a one-year subscription to the online course Best Practices in Reading Intervention.

The READ 180 Community Website connects educators with peers from across the country. It provides personalized social networking tools, downloadable resources, and the ability to share resources and media.

Purchasing and Support

1. How do I purchase READ 180?

To purchase READ 180, please contact your regional Account Executive.

Contact Sales >
2. How can I purchase additional materials to enhance my current READ 180 Stage?

READ 180 features supplemental instruction and libraries. For more information, please visit Shop READ 180.

3. What are the technical requirements for READ 180?

For the most current technical requirements, please visit our Product Support Website.

4. How do I contact Technical Support?

For technical assistance, please visit our Product Support Website.

Upgrading to READ 180 Next Generation

1. What is READ 180 Next Generation?

READ 180 Next Generation is the result of five years of intensive research and development. Informed by our experience serving over one million students a day in over 40,000 classrooms, READ 180 Next Generation reflects the best practices observed in the most successful implementations across the country. A suite of new technology, data analyses, content and resources is designed to maximize student engagement, teacher effectiveness, and leader empowerment. It represents the best of what is known about how to raise achievement for struggling adolescent readers. The Goal: College & Career Readiness for ALL Students.

Learn More >
2. When will READ 180 Next Generation be available?

READ 180 Next Generation is available NOW!

3. What is included in a READ 180 Next Generation Upgrade Kit?

For a complete list of the Upgrade Kit components, please Download our PDF or visit the Upgrade section to learn more.

4. How many boxes are included in my READ 180 Next Generation Upgrade Kit?

Each READ 180 Next Generation Upgrade Kit will be packaged in the following boxes:

  • QuickStart Kit (1 Box)
  • Teaching Materials (1 Box)
  • Technology (1 Box)
  • Student Library (packaged in new crates)
  • Stage A (2 boxes)
  • Stages B & C (3 boxes)
  • Student rBooks
    • 30 copies (2 boxes)
    • 60 copies (4 boxes)
5. Will my teachers receive training on READ 180 Next Generation?

Yes. When you upgrade to READ 180 Next Generation, your teachers will receive one day (7 hours) of in-person training and access to an interactive training webinar.

6. What changes were made to the rBook?

New content in the rBook includes:

  • New React & Write prompts throughout each reading to create daily opportunities for writing in response to reading
  • New writing instruction in Workshops 4–9 that scaffolds students as they construct multi-paragraph essays
  • New 21st Century Literacy Instruction and corresponding Workshop Wrap-Up Projects that can be used as performance-based assessments
  • New Text Complexity ratings for every rBook reading
  • Updated professional development routines and RED pages
7. What changes were made to the student libraries?

The student libraries include 21 new titles in Stage A and 20 new titles in Stages B and C (5 copies each), SRC! Quizzes, and new Text Complexity ratings for all titles.

Overall, the libraries feature 45% more nonfiction, as well as beloved series, popular authors, argument/debate titles, graphic classics, historic nonfiction, poetry, and drama.

8. What changes were made to the READ 180 Student Software?

READ 180 Next Generation Student Software was rebuilt from the ground up and is now browser-based. The Student Software includes a new Writing Zone. The Writing Zone scaffolds students as they build competence and confidence with writing in the service of reading and supports them with writing to make an argument.

Students also have 67% more Software Topics to choose from. In addition to the nine existing topics (organized into People & Cultures, Science & Math, and History & Geography), READ 180 Next Generation includes two new strands: Literature & the Arts and Your World & Beyond.

9. What are eReads?

eReads are 100% nonfiction articles aligned to the READ 180 Topic Software. There are 60 eRead articles per Stage and each eRead article is available in two levels: 1—2 and 3—4.

An eRead unlocks once a student starts a new Topic in the Software. The goal is for students to build on the background knowledge and vocabulary they are acquiring in the Topic Software and stretch themselves with related text.

We recommend implementing eReads in the Independent Reading Rotation or as homework. Every eRead includes an SRC! Quiz so they are fully accountable and will also contribute to students' words read. eReads are fully web-based and are available anytime/anywhere if teachers enable student access.

10. What are the technology recommendations for READ 180 Next Generation?

For a complete list of technology recommendations for READ 180 Next Generation, please visit our Product Support Website.

11. What is SAM v2.0 and how does this impact READ 180 Next Generation?

SAM v2.0 is the management system for READ 180 Next Generation and is required to run READ 180 Next Generation.

SAM v2.0 enables all Scholastic technology programs to access applications and media through a browser. The browser can access applications and media from your district’s server or from the Scholastic Data Center via the internet if you have purchased Scholastic Hosting Services. Additional key benefits of SAM v2.0 include:

  • Enhanced search capability makes finding and moving student enrollments easier.
  • New tools for creating .csv files streamline the process of importing and exporting data.
  • The new Student Digital Portfolio simplifies grading of Success Zone passages, rSkills writing, and the new Writing Zone
12. When I upgrade to READ 180 Next Generation, will my READ 180 Enterprise Edition data migrate?

Yes. Critical READ 180 Enterprise Edition data will migrate to READ 180 Next Generation, including:

  • Topics Completed
  • Segments Completed
  • Current Level
  • Product controls (508 compliance)

The migration process will also provide users with a .csv archive containing historical data.

13. Where will my READ 180 Next Generation media files reside?

Whether READ 180 Next Generation is deployed as a local installation in the district or is hosted by Scholastic, we recommend that the media is installed at the school or district for optimal performance.

Where necessary to improve performance and reduce network congestion, Scholastic will recommend installing the Scholastic Media Accelerator (SMA), a software application used to set up a specialized media server within a district to deliver the rich media assets (audio, video, and animations). The SMA improves overall performance by moving these large files closer to the student, thereby reducing bandwidth contention with other programs that may be using the district's Internet connection. One or more SMAs may be installed depending on the size of the district and number of concurrent users expected. The SMA software can be installed in a Macintosh, Windows, or Linux computer.

14. What are my options to deploy READ 180 Next Generation?

READ 180 Next Generation is a browser application where the server may be hosted by the district (Local Installation) or by Scholastic from its data center ("Hosted" Deployment).

  • Local Installation: The server computer housing SAM and the program software is located at the district and/or school. Workstations connect with the local server over a Local- or Wide-Area network.
  • Hosted Deployment: A Scholastic data center houses the program's server software. District/school workstations use a connection secured by SSL to connect to the hosted server, so there are no school or district servers to purchase or maintain. However, for most districts, Scholastic recommends that media be hosted locally on an SMA inside the district firewall to reduce network congestion.
15. What if I have specific questions about my implementation? Who can I contact for technical support?

If you have specific questions regarding your implementation, please contact Scholastic Technical Services at 1-800-283-5974 or visit the READ 180 Product Support Website.